Studying Onset and Evolution of Agricultural Drought in Mekong River Basin through Hydrologic Modeling Academic Article uri icon


  • Departures in precipitation from the normal are the cause of the onset of agricultural drought. In this study, we aim to identify extreme precipitation deficits using an index called Percent Normal (PN). We applied the proposed PN index to the agriculturally productive Mekong River Basin (MRB) to evaluate the propagation of precipitation deficits into agricultural drought based on the change in slope and mean of the precipitation, soil moisture and evapotranspiration anomalies. The results of the study showed the proposed PN index identified historical droughts in the years 1992, 19971998 and 20002006 in MRB; of these, 1992 was shown to be the longest drought, which lasted from the 43rd week (October) of 1991 to the 49th week (December) of 1994. The short-term but extreme drought was identified to occur in 2005 with below-normal precipitation that lasted for more than a year. An immediate effect of precipitation deficit was observed in evapotranspiration (ET) and soil water for agricultural (Thailand) and forested regions (Parts of Cambodia) of the basin with <5 weeks lag. We conclude that the drought indices adopted in this study are suitable to identify the small and long-term drought events, which will facilitate the development of a drought-resilient agricultural production system.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Palanisamy, B., Narasimhan, B., Paul, S., Srinivasan, R., Wangpimool, W., Lim, S., & Sayasane, R.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • Palanisamy, Bakkiyalakshmi||Narasimhan, Balaji||Paul, Sabu||Srinivasan, Raghavan||Wangpimool, Winai||Lim, Sopheap||Sayasane, Rattykone

publication date

  • December 2021